GUWAHATI, Aug 31 � �Since the reorganization of Assam in 1971, all of the seven States of the Northeast have been beset with their own set of problems, so much so that there has been no time for anyone to even remotely think for etching out a collective identity of the region. Now, though eight in number with the addition of Sikkim, there is nothing regional about the entire region�s psyche.�
Delivering the Late Harendra Nath Barua Memorial Lecture, 2014, Manas Chaudhuri, former editor, The Shillong Times, made some minute observations about the indifferent nature of Northeastern States towards each other. In his talk titled �Seven Sisters without a mother!� Chaudhuri stressed the fact that though they are facing similar problems, the member States of this region have failed to build a strong bond at any level and raise their voice for solution of the common issues.
In one of the examples to illustrate his point, he said that the foreigners� problem was not a problem of Assam alone. The rest of the Northeast too has a big stake in its satisfactory solution. Assam would surely require huge helping hands from her neighbours, he said.
�Neither our media, nor public representatives in the Parliament have been able build a regional identity for addressing the common issues. Though the entire region unanimously level charges against the Centre of step-motherly treatment, a large share of blemish squarely lie with the people of the region themselves,� he added.
Setting an agenda for the region, he advocated remodelling the North Eastern Council and making it a regional parliament, giving appropriate representation to each member, creating an exclusive infrastructure development agency and master plan for job opportunities in the region, among others.
The Harendra Nath Barua Memorial Trust organized a tribute paying ceremony in the memory of Asompran Harendra Nath Barua on the occasion of his 27th death anniversary. The late Barua was a fearless freedom fighter, an advocate and a pioneering journalist.
Litterateur, journalist and former Asam Sahitya Sabha president Kanak Sen Deka was felicitated on the occasion for his contributions in the fields of literature and journalism. In his speech, Deka remembered HN Barua as among the most powerful journalists of his time. Speaking about the challenges in the field of journalism, he said that journalism is a thorny path and inroads of capitalist forces as well as political leaders have posed some new challenges in the contemporary times.
Eminent journalist and president of the HN Barua Memorial Trust, Radhika Mohan Bhagawati presided over the meeting. Informing the gathering about the future projects of the trust he said that the trust was contemplating introducing more research activities in the field of journalism as well as launching an award in the name of Harendra Nath Barua.